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A Message From the Superintendent

Dear Families and Staff,

 

The last five days have been a mix of emotions as we work towards the final preparations to open school.  Our excitement to begin a new year is coupled with the sadness and anger that comes from another tragedy in our own community: the loss of an innocent life, Mr. Daniel Prude.

 

I look back at what I wrote three months ago when our city protested after the death of George Floyd, and I am saddened to see how little has changed.    

 

In East Irondequoit Schools we are a family.  We thrive, not in spite of our differences, but because of them.  Our schools represent what is so amazing about our community and our nation: a diverse population with countless backgrounds but the same goal-- to live in a society where everyone is afforded the same opportunities and protections as everyone else.

 

Unfortunately, that is not the case.  No one can deny that racism and social injustice continue to create a world that is divisive; one which not only puts up barriers but threatens the very lives of many of those around us.

 

We must ask ourselves, what kind of world do we want to live in?  What kind of world do we want our children to live in?  As a school district these are questions we face every day, but rarely are they asked with such urgency.

 

I want our schools to be more than just places to learn.  I want them to be places of hope, comfort, and support.  I want our students and staff to feel safe and accepted. 

 

As a district we have begun the journey to create awareness and opportunity. Our teachers participated in almost one thousand hours of Culturally Responsive curriculum writing this summer.  As a community we dialogued with over 300 Rochester residents in our first community book read of STAMPED: Racism, Antiracism and You by Ibram X. Kendi and Jason Reynolds. We continue our committee work with our Diversity and Inclusion team and look forward to the new partnerships with community mental health providers who will work to support our students and families.

 

Please know that we will continue to work with our families, our educators, and our community leaders to offer an inclusive environment where caring, compassion and empathy thrive.

 

 

Mary E. Grow

Superintendent of Schools

East Irondequoit CSD